Short Stories by Pat Nelson

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Pat Nelson Book Signing and Recital

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October 15, 2013 - Click here for more pictures.

March 2014 - Skeeter's to Serve BBQ - West Woodland is heating up with a new BBQ place! Eager Beaver, the long-time hamburger joint near Dollar Tree, at the corner of Goerig and Robbins Street, will soon open as Skeeter's BBQ. Owner Marv Ray, aka Skeeter, is no newcomer to Woodland's food scene. Folks have lined up for his barbecue at Don's Donuts as well as Woodland Planters' Days and LaCenter Our Days celebrations plus wedding receptions and other catered events. Whenever my husband, Bob, and I spotted Skeeter at local-area events, we took a couple orders of his delicious baby-back ribs home for dinner. Skeeter hopes to open the new eatery by April 5 and will be open...read more.

February 2014 - Woodland's for the Birds - When my husband and I moved to Woodland 15 years ago, we had no idea we would become so fascinated by the area's birds. Eagles, ospreys, gulls, herons, terns, ducks and Canada geese are our neighbors on Horseshoe Lake and at the nearby Lewis and Columbia Rivers. I will never tire of watching the ospreys. I hear a shrill whistle then, as an osprey spots a fish, it swoops down, folds its wings and dives into the water with great force....read more.

January 2014 - Out With the Old, In With the New - Woodland Police Station Makes Move - December 3 was moving day for the Woodland Police Department. It had outgrown its space in downtown Woodland, and made 200 E. Scott Avenue its new home. When I visited two weeks after the move, there was a small stack of empty cardboard moving-boxes headed for recycling. The smell of fresh paint and construction still hung in the air. Police Department employees were on duty, looking forward to a long stay in their new home...read more.

October 2013 - Youngsters Perform Northwest Coast Dances - While other kids are riding bikes and playing games with their Xboxes, Mara Reese, 11, and her brother Isaac Reese, 9, are busy performing Northwest Coast dances at the Lelooska Cultural Center at Ariel, 14 miles east of Woodland. Both have been doing this their whole lives, starting as babes in arms. They began dancing as soon as they could walk. The Lelooska Cultural Center performs both daytime school programs and evening public performances...read more.

July 2013 - Safe Swimming - This time of year, I enjoy watching swimmers, boaters and stand-up paddle-boarders from my home on Woodland's Horseshoe Lake. I, too, love to swim in the lake. As a child, I learned to swim in lakes and streams, and later took lessons in pools. Some friends say, "I don't like to swim where I can't touch bottom," but that never bothered me because I had learned to swim where the bottom was irregular and the depth varied from one spot to another. For those who learn in pools, the varying depths of a lake or stream can be frightening...read more.

July 2013 - Getting Away From It All ... Close to Woodland - With so much nearby beauty to explore, my husband, Bob, and I decided to save gas and take a camping trip close to home. My first stop, a couple of days in advance, was the Woodland Tourist Information Center located on the corner of Goerig Street and Lakeshore Drive, just west of I-5's southbound on ramp. There, Virginia Wilkerson provided me with maps and brochures, as well as her personal knowledge of the area...read more.

June 2013 - Window on Woodland - Planters' Days 2013 - Woodland will burst with excitement when it kicks off its 91st Planters' Days celebration June 13. The carnival on Horseshoe Lake opens Thursday, June 13 at 3P.M., and soon after, kids with chalk in hand will decorate downtown sidewalks while they wait for the beginning of the 5P.M. children's parade. Many years ago, I proudly marched in the parade alongside my grandchildren Max and Chelsea. Max, in a green-feathered bird suit...read more.

February 8, 2013 - A Big Heart - The decorated heart-shaped boxes of Valentine’s Day candy set my teenage imagination running. Maybe someday, I thought, someone would be so in love with me that he would buy me one of those big, beautiful red hearts decorated with ribbons and lace. Store displays were gigantic and attractive. There would be one or two huge hearts in the display, then many boxes that measured about a foot across and even more that were about 6" wide....read more.

December 12, 2010 - Christmas Event - Twelve friends from Clatskanie, Longview, Woodland, and Vancouver gathered Sunday, December 12, for a full day of Christmas fun. The first stop was Tommy O’s (www.tommysaloha.com), Vancouver's Pacific Rim bistro, serving Hawaiian cuisine. Next, the group gathered at the first Presbyterian Church in Vancouver to see friend Petey Fleischmann, of Woodland....read more.

June 20, 2008 - Anticipation building for Planters' Day - To me, this photo of the partially-assembled carnival at Woodland's Horseshoe Lake represents the word "anticipation." Carnival workers anticipate a busy festival, smiling faces and lots of ticket sales this weekend during the Planters' Days festival...read more.

June 6, 2008 - Save Gas...Find Adventure Close to Home - If you're worried about this summer's high gas prices putting the brakes on your vacation plans, try thinking closer to home. We're fortunate to live close to mountains, forests, lakes and beaches...read more.

May 23, 2008 - Skate Park Goes Green - A sign stating "Tree City USA" now sits near three newly planted flowering trees at the edge of the lawn stretching gently downhill from Woodland's skateboard park. In late April, City of Woodland employees and volunteers laid sod to convert the area surrounding...read more.

Eagle's Eye View - The patriotic holiday Memorial Day is observed in many ways. For some, it marks the beginning of a season of camping and picnicking. For others, it is a day to decorate the gravesites of loved ones with flowers....read more.

Youngsters visit Lelooska Cultural Center - Three weeks ago, on a cold and blustery April day that threatened snow, I looked out at Horseshoe Lake and saw more shoreline activity than I thought the nippy day deserved. Two men fished from an aluminum boat. The wind pushed them along as though they were trolling...read more.

Kids, birds will compete for Horseshoe Lake fish - In preparation for spring fishing at Woodland's Horseshoe Lake, the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife planted more than 8800 rainbow trout and more than 6510 brown trout during the first eight days of April. Another 2,500-3,500 rainbows will be trucked to Horseshoe Lake...read more.

Just for Fun - There were more poodles at the Kelso Elks Saturday than you'd see at a dog show…poodle skirts, that is. Felt skirts in all colors, but predominantly in red and purple, swished and swirled as 200 members of the Red Hat Society celebrated its ninth birthday...read more.

Party Girls - I pulled my hair back into a saucy ponytail to show off the deep purple hickey on my neck. A sterling silver going steady ring on a beaded metal chain bounced up and down on my ample chest as I walked...read more.

The Old Gray Mare - Horses and jockeys from all over the county converged on the park at Lake Sacajawea. The picnic shelter was decorated with red and purple balloons and streamers...read more.

Blind Sighted - I came home from our store and emptied the plastic bag of mail onto my desk. I began sorting the envelopes. Invoices went to my husband’s inbox for approval, payroll went to the bookkeeper, and advertising went straight to the garbage can, unopened...read more.

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